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A Momentary Flow

Evolving Worldviews

Happiness and Its Discontents-So how else might we define happiness?

See on Scoop.it - Philosophy everywhere everywhen

Are you satisfied with your life? How are you feeling? Does either question tell us what we really want to know?

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I would suggest that when we talk about happiness, we are actually referring, much of the time, to a complex emotional phenomenon. Call it emotional well-being. Happiness as emotional well-being concerns your emotions and moods, more broadly your emotional condition as a whole. To be happy is to inhabit a favorable emotional state.


See on opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com

Air pollution in China and other Asian countries is having far-reaching impacts on weather patterns across the Northern Hemisphere, a study suggests. Researchers have found that pollutants are strengthening storms above the Pacific Ocean, which feeds into weather systems in other parts of the world. The effect was most pronounced during the winter. The study is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Lead author Yuan Wang, from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology, said: “The effects are quite dramatic. The pollution results in thicker and taller clouds and heavier precipitation.” (via BBC News - Asian air pollution strengthens Pacific storms)

India court recognises transgender people as third gender
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India’s Supreme Court has recognised transgender people as a third gender, in a landmark ruling. “It is the right of every human being to choose their gender,” it said in granting rights to those who identify themselves as neither male nor female. It ordered the government to provide transgender people with quotas in jobs and education in line with other minorities, as well as key amenities. According to one estimate, India has about two million transgender people. In India, a common term used to describe transgender people, transsexuals and cross-dressers is hijra (eunuch). Campaigners say they live on the fringes of society, often in poverty, ostracised because of their gender identity. Most make a living by singing and dancing or by begging and prostitution. Rights groups say they often face huge discrimination and that sometimes hospitals refuse to admit them. So far, they have been forced to write either male or female as their gender. “Transgenders are also citizens of India” and they must be “provided equal opportunity to grow”, the court said in its order on Tuesday. (via BBC News - India court recognises transgender people as third gender)

India court recognises transgender people as third gender
-
India’s Supreme Court has recognised transgender people as a third gender, in a landmark ruling. “It is the right of every human being to choose their gender,” it said in granting rights to those who identify themselves as neither male nor female. It ordered the government to provide transgender people with quotas in jobs and education in line with other minorities, as well as key amenities. According to one estimate, India has about two million transgender people. In India, a common term used to describe transgender people, transsexuals and cross-dressers is hijra (eunuch). Campaigners say they live on the fringes of society, often in poverty, ostracised because of their gender identity. Most make a living by singing and dancing or by begging and prostitution. Rights groups say they often face huge discrimination and that sometimes hospitals refuse to admit them. So far, they have been forced to write either male or female as their gender. “Transgenders are also citizens of India” and they must be “provided equal opportunity to grow”, the court said in its order on Tuesday. (via BBC News - India court recognises transgender people as third gender)

The future of being Human

IEET Fellow David Eagleman discuses how we and other animals perceive reality. He referres to the umwelt in the context, of how our technologies will enhance our experience of the umwelt so that we can experience difference properties of the world.

“In the semiotic theories of Jakob von Uexküll and Thomas A. Sebeok, umwelt (plural: umwelten; from the German Umwelt meaning “environment” or “surroundings”) is the “biological foundations that lie at the very epicenter of the study of both communication and signification in the human [and non-human] animal.” The term is usually translated as “self-centered world”. Uexküll theorised that organisms can have different umwelten, even though they share the same environment.”

h\t to IEET

For Darwin, the ability to modulate responses indicated “the presence of a mind of some kind.” He also wrote of the “mental qualities” of worms in relation to their plugging up their burrows, noting that “if worms are able to judge…having drawn an object close to the mouths of their burrows, how best to drag it in, they must acquire some notion of its general shape.” This moved him to argue that worms “deserve to be called intelligent, for they then act in nearly the same manner as a man under similar circumstances.”

The Mental Life of Plants and Worms, Among Others by Oliver Sacks | The New York Review of Books